Acadia Files – Encouraging a Love of Science and Critical Thinking

STEAM continues to be a big buzz word. There is the thought that it is the future. But it isn’t necessarily the engineering, science, or computer world that STEAM is so important for. Regardless of whether your child wants to be a game developer, marine biologist, or an English teacher, they have to be able to think critically and be aware of the world around them. That’s just what they will see in the fun series aimed at 1st-3rd graders, Acadia Files by Katie Coppens and illustrated by Holly Hatam.

Acadia Greene is a young girl who wants answers. Whether to the question of who is stealing her blueberries, why her hair is curly, or why leaves change colors. Because her parents are both teachers, rather than just giving her the answers they make her figure them out herself and will help her on her way. Her father encourages her to use the scientific method to solve her questions so she works from research to hypothesis, evidence gathering, and final conclusion. She puts all of her information down in her science journal as all good scientists should.

acadia journal 1

So far there are two books in this fun series. Book one is Summer Science while book two is Autumn Science. There are minimal story lines to accompany the book, but more emphasis is put on each of the questions that Acadia has and how she solves them. The bits of story that run through each book help Acadia learn additional lessons. In book one it is a lesson about kindness and about not judging people without understanding their side of the story. In book two there is a guiding idea of having Acadia look outside of herself to see how different things impact the larger world. She even writes a letter to the Town Council to help make her park cleaner and leave her mark on the world.

acadia journal 2

I really enjoy how these books encourage kids to think outside of the box and to question the world around them. The fact that they read like a story and are questions that kids really would have helps. Another wonderful part of these books is that at the end of each chapter/question, we get to see inside of Acadia’s science journal.

acadia journal 3

I can’t wait to see how the kids respond to this!


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